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The next tip is to substitute more expensive produce for something cheaper. If a recipe calls for fruit that is currently out of season and precious, you have to ask yourself whether it is essential. Often the method will work just as well with a less expensive ingredient. When we started on our raw adventure, it seemed like almost every recipe was full of expensive ingredients, and that is how we wasted a lot of money. And of course, some of these costly ingredients were only available to buy from the people that suggested the recipes. It did not take us too long to wise up and realize that many of the raw food gurus were just interested in our money and not our health.
If you have researched some raw food recipes, you will probably have noticed ingredients such as the highly popular superfood, goji berries. These tend to be expensive, especially if you buy them at health food stores or raw food websites. Some raw food websites promote their goji berries to be the only ones you should buy because they are ‘special.’ We have quickly learned that ‘special’ is synonymous with expensive.
While goji berries are a great addition to your raw food diet, they can be substituted with other less expensive ingredients such as raisins or sultanas. They taste just as good and work very well in almost every recipe we have ever tried that lists goji berries as an ingredient. If you are in the US, you should have access to some tremendous sun-dried raisins, so use them in your recipes.
But aren’t goji berries more nutritious? Well, that is what all the raw food gurus would have you believe. And maybe they are right. But it is not just about what food has the absolute best nutritional profile. We need to eat a wide variety of foods, not stick to only a few with the highest nutritional value. Even if goji berries have more nutrition than both raisins and sultanas, we think you would be better off eating all three rather than eating only one. Each one will have a slightly different mix of nutrients, and you need them all. Do not fall for marketing that claims one is the best, and you must only eat it.
The same goes for all other produce. You can make nut milk from any nut, and each will have a different nutritional profile. So, instead of having almond milk every day, have a different nut milk every day. If you are on a tight budget, then stick to the cheaper nuts. You will still be getting super nutrition even if you are substituting for lower-priced options. Whether it is berries, nuts, seeds, fruits, or vegetables, always think about replacing some of the ingredients for cheaper alternatives. You will be amazed at how much you can save this way.